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Resign if you can't fight corruption, rights group tells Uhuru

Francis Auma and Elius Ngugi at Uhuru Park on Friday, March 8, 2019. /ERNEST CORNEL
Francis Auma and Elius Ngugi at Uhuru Park on Friday, March 8, 2019. /ERNEST CORNEL

President Uhuru Kenyatta should resign if he cannot competently combat corruption, human rights activists under ‘Kenyans for Goodwill’ have said.

The group

said at least two cabinet secretaries in Uhuru's government have been implicated in mega scandals and are still in office.

Treasury CS Henry Rotich and Tourism’s Najib Balala were named as the two ministers.

Rotich has been grilled thrice already this week by the DCI over the multi-billion

Arror and Kimwarer dams scandal.

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Balala was also questioned by detectives over the controversial Sh100 million tender to facilitate a tourism conference in 2017.

The group vowed to picket outside Uhuru’s office weekly until the CSs and other implicated state officers are fired.

“We have seen Heads of State in other continents resign because of corruption. We are sending a message to the President that he must act now,” Muthiora Kariara, former deputy president candidate said at Uhuru Park on Friday.

South Korea Prime Minister Lee Wan-Koo resigned in April 2015 amid a corruption scandal.

Peru’s president Pedro Pablo Kuczynskis offered his resignation after he was linked to the Brazilian construction giant Odebrecht, which had been involved in a massive bribery scandal.

The group’s chairman Elius Ngugi said corruption should be declared a national disaster, blaming the Judiciary and Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission for its spread.

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“It is evident that we are not short of policies and laws against corruption, but a weak judicial system and superficial EACC which increases major corruption risks in the country,” he said.

Ngugi said Uhuru’s empty threats hurt and has forced citizens to take action and demand for their rights.

“The government seems negligent of the welfare of its people,” he said.

Francis Auma from Muslims for Human Rights demanded the recovery of public money from the assets of those enriched through corruption.

He said the Public Procurement Oversight Authority should publish companies and directors blacklisted for engaging in economic crimes.

“The convicted should also be barred permanently from holding public office or doing business with the government,” Auma maintained.

Ngugi said all under probe should not be appointed in

government.

He urged Chief Justice David Maraga to ensure corruption cases are speeded up.

“The CJ should consider setting up a division of the High Court with original jurisdiction to hear corruption and economic crime matters.

He said the accused will have been blocked from heading to High Court with judicial review applications and constitutional references that slow prosecution.

Ngugi said contracts that above Sh500 million should be reviewed within 14 days of submission with a receipt of requisite documentation from line ministries.